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New Mexico State University teams earns second in hydraulics contest

Three New Mexico State University civil engineering majors placed second in their category at an international hydropower design contest this month in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Jason Stauffer, Jared Lujan and Daniel Lamb, juniors in civil engineering at New Mexico State University, placed second in their category at the international Hydro Power contest held in July in Salt Lake City. It was the first time a New Mexico State team had entered the contest. (NMSU photo by Meghann Dallin)

Daniel Lamb, Jared Lujan and Jason Stauffer, all juniors in New Mexico State's civil engineering department, beat out five other teams from Canada and the United States to take second place in the junior division, power class, of the Hydro Power Contest. The contest was held in conjunction with Waterpower XII, a biannual hydropower industry conference held July 9-11 in Salt Lake City. It was the first time a team from New Mexico State had entered the contest, said team sponsor associate professor of Civil, Agricultural and Geological Engineering J. Phillip King.

The aim of the contest was to see which team could raise a 1.5 kilogram weight the fastest, using a water-powered device to turn a turbine wheel of a set size. The New Mexico State team designed a device that used two precisely-aimed poly vinyl chloride nozzles. Its time was only a fraction of a second slower than the first place winner, King said.

"I told Daniel, Jared and Jason that the objective was to get a little experience, do the best we could and compete for real next year. Fortunately, they didn't listen to me. The three of them worked very hard, intelligently and constructively and I am very impressed with their accomplishment," King said.

The contest was originated by Hydro Review, an industry magazine, and is sponsored by the magazine, the Tennessee Valley Authority, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and several private companies.

Lamb, Lujan and Stauffer won a $2,500 scholarship from the Department of Energy, to be split between them, $600 from the contest sponsors, $50 each from the Hydropower Research Foundation and $500 from the sponsors to help fund a return to the contest.

Photo is available at http://kiernan.nmsu.edu/newsphoto/hydropwr.jpg.
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